The right-wing Israeli government of Minister Benyamin Netanyahu has
been staggered by the massive demonstrations and strike wave engulfing
Egypt, its critical Arab ally in the region, and the simultaneous
emergence of social opposition in Israel itself.
In recent weeks, there have been several demonstrations in Israel’s
predominantly Arab towns in support of the Egypt protests, including a
small one in Tel Aviv of Palestinian and Jewish Israelis. In addition,
Israel’s newspapers have noted in passing expressions of public sympathy
for the mass protests in Egypt calling for an end to the Mubarak
Not so the Israeli government. In speech after speech, Prime
Minister Benyamin Netanyahu has warned that should the Mubarak
dictatorship fall, chaos will prevail. Though the Muslim Brotherhood do
not have majority support and have made very clear their intention not
to lead protests against Mubarak, Netanyahu constantly raises the
spectre of the Islamic revolution in Iran: the Islamists, meaning the
Muslim Brotherhood, will take control in Egypt, abrogate the 1978-9
peace deal at Camp David, and march on Israel.
By implication, Netanyahu is suggesting that the fall of the Mubarak dictatorship is an event Israel might oppose by force.
The Israeli ruling class’s fear over the events in Egypt is
two-fold. In the first place, Egypt—with its larg… >>>